Michelle Williams Thanks Jessica Chastain For Her Support Amid Pay Dispute

'Somebody who was at the head of the pack, Jessica Chastain, pulling me up with her,' the actress talks about the controversy surrounding 'All the Money in the World'.

AceShowbiz - Actress Michelle Williams credits Jessica Chastain with rallying the "wolf pack" to highlight the pay disparity controversy surrounding movie reshoots for "All the Money in the World".

Director Ridley Scott decided to bring in Christopher Plummer to replace Kevin Spacey as oil magnate J. Paul Getty in the biographical thriller last year, after the actor was hit with a series of sexual misconduct allegations.

Cast and crewmembers were called back to the set for a 10-day shoot in November, but it subsequently emerged that the "Manchester by the Sea" star had earned less than $1,000 (£760) for the extra scenes, a small fraction of her co-star Mark Wahlberg's $1.5 million (£1.14 million) pay cheque for the same work.

Michelle claims the information was already out there before her old friend Jessica asked if she could tweet about the huge pay gap in January, and because no one had paid attention to the news before the launch of the Time's Up movement against inequality and harassment in the workplace, the Oscar nominee wasn't prepared for the firestorm that followed.

"I've never really been at the centre of something like that, of a news cycle like that - other than, you know, traumatic death," she told Vanity Fair magazine, referring to the tragic 2008 loss of her ex Heath Ledger, the father of her 12-year-old daughter Matilda.

She was quickly inundated with phone calls and messages after Chastain's post went viral, and she turned to equality activist Monica Ramirez for advice as she navigated her way through phone meetings with high-level executives at William Morris Endeavor (WME), the talent agency which represents both Michelle and Mark.

The uproar over the scandal prompted Walhberg to donate his fee in Michelle's name to the Time's Up defence fund, which was created at the start of 2018 to provide legal support for victims of sexual assault, and bosses at WME followed suit by also gifting $500,000 (£381,300) to the cause.

Instead of ditching the company to find representatives who would fight for better pay on her behalf, Michelle decided to stay put and continue working with WME and her agent, Brent Morley, who she "values creatively".

"I believe in second chances," she explained.

Michelle has since learned from the "teachable moment," recognising the power women hold when they band together.

"I was one woman by myself, and I couldn't do anything about it," she shared. "But in the wolf pack... things are possible. And that's really what it took: somebody who was at the head of the pack, Jessica Chastain, pulling me up with her, and then all these other women surrounding me, teaching me."

"No one should have to step out onto a limb on their own," Jessica explained. "We are all here to share the weight. It's easy to label one actress (but) difficult, harder to label a group."

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